Universities Superannuation Scheme (USS)
The Universities Superannuation Scheme (USS) is the principal pension scheme provided by universities and other higher education and associated institutions in the UK. It has around 330,000 members across almost 400 institutions.
The USS is open to eligible staff on Grade 6 or above, and all staff who meet the relevant criteria will be automatically enrolled. If you are eligible for USS membership but do not meet the criteria for automatic enrolment, you can request to join. Please contact the Pensions Team for further details.
If you are already a member of USS, or are thinking about joining, full details of the scheme can be found on the USS website.
On 1 April 2016, the Scheme became a Career Revalued Benefit (CRB) scheme. All new and existing members now contribute to the new CRB arrangement which has two sections:
1. Retirement Income Builder Section
The Retirement Income Builder Section operates on a career revalued benefit basis for members with earnings up to the earnings threshold*:
Pension accrual = 1/75th of pensionable salary each year (plus revaluation)
Tax Free Cash accrual = 3/75ths of pensionable salary each year (plus revaluation)
2. Investment Builder Section
Contributions payable in respect of earnings above the earnings threshold* are payable into the Investment Builder Section. This section is a defined contribution arrangement that is also used by members who pay additional contributions and for benefits that are transferred in to USS.
* The earnings threshold for 2019/20 is £58,596 per annum.
All members pay the same contribution rate regardless of earnings:
Member contribution = 9.6% of pensionable salary. This is expected to increase to 11% from 1 October 2021 (subject to the outcome of the 2020 Valuation).
Employer contribution = 21.1% of pensionable salary. This is expected to increase to 23.7% from 1 October 2021 (subject to the outcome of the 2020 Valuation).
Members can also pay additional contributions into the Investment Builder Section. If you wish to pay additional contributions, you can request to do this via My USS.
Further information about the scheme and the current changes can be found on the USS web pages for members
Following the triennial valuation as at 31 March 2017, USS has now concluded a further valuation as at 31 March 2018. Further information regarding this can be found on the University’s web pages and the USS web pages.
If you are an active member of USS and have benefits in the Investment Builder Section (e.g. you are paying additional contributions, have earnings above the earnings threshold, or have transferred benefits into USS) you can manage your contributions and investments via My USS.
My USS enables you to manage the amount of additional contributions you pay and also how these contributions are invested. You can actively manage your investments yourself or you can ask that USS do this for you. Please note that all additional contribution changes and investment choices must be actioned through My USS and not via the Pensions Team.
If you need any assistance registering for this service, please call the USS Member Service Helpdesk on 0333 300 1043. Lines are open 9am to 5pm, Monday to Friday.
Need Help or More Information?
Who to Contact
If you have any queries then please contact the Pensions Team.
Postal Address: Pension Office, Department of Finance, University of Sheffield, Firth Court, Western Bank, Sheffield, S10 2TN
Location Address: Pension Office, Finance Department, Floor 5 The Arts Tower, Western Bank, Sheffield, S10 2TN